As a recovering alcoholic and cocaine addict I cannot tell you how many times I heard the lecture from my husband, family, friends, my infectious diseases physician and mental health professionals about my needing to quit.
My husband’s lecture was always the normal ultimatum and threat of kicking me out of our house or sending me to jail.
My family and friend’s lecture was always about how I have so much to live for and all the things I would miss if I were to die of an overdose or alcohol poisoning.
My physician and mental health professional’s lecture was always about, you guessed it, how the alcohol abuse and cocaine abuse were affecting my physical and mental health. Along with this was the added reminder about how my alcoholism and cocaine addiction were going to take their toll on my HIV/AIDS viral load and T-Cell count. Which for all the abuse my body has taken just in the last 6 years, I am still non-detectable and my T-Cells are still above 700 – so I have been extremely lucky!
Do you ever lecture yourself? I bet you do, either aloud or silently. For me, my lecture to myself this time around was the best lecture of them all. You see I am a very faithful Catholic who truly believes that I have the best life coaches in my corner in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. While yes my faith has faltered at times, I always find my way back.
The most important thing that I can share in regards to recovery of any addiction is this. The individual entering into recovery can not be doing it for the wrong reasons – even though they may seem like the right reasons. For instance, we cannot enter recovery to please our family, friends, physicians, or our mental health professionals. We cannot enter recovery because of what we are afraid of losing. We must, as I did for the second time in 4 years, determine that we are “tired of being sick and tired of being sick and tired”. Then we must take the ever painstaking steps to work on our recovery. I am a proud member of Alcoholics Anonymous as well as being a member of Global Steps AA a video AA meeting group on the hosting site In The Rooms. These groups and programs continue to guide me through my continued recovery – because I want them to.
Four years ago today I began my first journey through recovery because of every single reason above six months after losing my job that I loved with the University Career Center at The University of Texas at San Antonio. I loved being clean and sober. My life was coming back together and I even went back to work at my beloved University of Texas at San Antonio with the Institute for P-20 Initiatives. In May 2016 I threw away 2 years and 3 months of being clean and sober because of life. The downward spiral just continued to through the summer. I was still working and loving my job of over one year and then on September 14th, 2016 I turned 50 and I have no idea what happened to cause the hurricane that was a comin. I visited my old haunts and got drunk off my butt and bought a whole mess of cocaine and then I was off to the races. I didn’t return to work until mid October because of continued illnesses being caused by my being off to the races.
The craziness continued and of course I lost my job with the university on February 16, 2017 for a different reason other than my addictions but in essence caused by them. Does that make sense? I continued to enjoy, as I believed, all the drinking and drugging I was doing. In early April 2017 I attempted suicide by swallowing thirty trazodone pills while drinking heavily and doing coke. The attempt obviously did not work because folks are reading my writings. My Higher Power whom I choose to call God had and has different plans for me that are not meant for me to know.
I do know this, when I attended the ACTS Retreat 11/30 – 12/3 I meditated, I prayed and when it was all said and done I left my alcoholism and cocaine addiction on the Alter of the Tabernacle. This was on Saturday December 2nd. When I came home on Sunday I did walk to my store. I bought two 24 oz. cans of beer and a six pack of O’Doul’s Amber non alcoholic beer. That was the last day that I drank. On the night of 12/3 I meditated and prayed for guidance and help with remaining clean and sober everyday moving forward. I am so proud and happy to say that the daily obsession and need to drink and or get high have left me. I am currently two months and 10 days clean and sober. I do it by reminding myself that JUST for TODAY I WILL REMAIN CLEAN and SOBER!!!
That is what is in My Rattled Cage today!!!!